Brave covertly sells user data for AI training

Occurred: July 2023

Privacy-focused web browser Brave appeared to sell data about its users without their knowledge or permission to third-parties developing AI systems. 

The controversy resulted in accusations of poor ethics and hyprocrisy, and raised legal and ethical questions about the fair use of personal and copyrighted information.

Alex Ivanovs of Stack Diary first claimed Brave provides access to copyrighted content through its Brave Search API, allowing others to use this data for AI training without proper licensing. He also suggested this raised questions about Brave's commitment to privacy and good ethical behaviour. 

Search Engine Journal noted, 'The brewing controversy highlights tensions around using personal data to advance AI capabilities versus respecting data privacy and ownership rights. It underscores the need for clear communication and user consent regarding sharing their information.'

Operator: Brave Software
Developer: Brave Software
Country: USA
Sector: Multiple
Purpose: Share search results
Technology: Database
Issue: Copyright; Ethics; Privacy
Transparency: Governance; Marketing

Page info
Type: Incident
Published: August 2023
Last updated: November 2023